Maize exports from India dropped to a trickle

Maize (corn) exports from India have dropped to a trickle as high domestic prices have made its shipments uncompetitive in the global market. “Brazil is shipping to stations, such as Vietnam, at a very competitive price of $320 a tonne cost and shipment. But, over here, domestic prices are ruling higher, making exports unfeasible,” said M Madan Prakash, President, Agri Commodities Exporters Association (ACEA).

According to the International Grains Council, feed-grade maize is currently quoted at $293 and $288 a tonne from Brazil and Argentina, respectively. On the Chicago Board of Trade, benchmark corn futures are currently quoted at $7.77 a bushel ($305.88 a tonne). In April, futures had touched an 11­ year­ high of $8.1.

However, trade analysts say the prices are higher than normal as supplies from Russia and Ukraine have been affected due to the war between them, while supplies from Brazil and Europe have been affected by dry weather. In addition, the lower area under kharif maize is worrying the market. As of July 8, the area under kharif was down at 31.84 lakh hectares (lh) against 41.63 lh in the same period a year ago. The area has dropped in view of a deficient monsoon in June.

In view of this, shipments of other grains, including maize, have dropped 25 percent to 4.48 lakh tonnes (lt) in April­-May this fiscal from 5.97 lt a year ago. The value, however, is higher at ₹1,167 crores compared with ₹1,098 in the year­ago period­. Other grains export increased to 38.55 lt last fiscal from 30.26 lt in 2020-­21. The shipments were at an eight­ year high after 2014­-15 when 35.10 lt were exported.

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